Wong’s Resignation Creates New Council Vacancy

Whoever succeeds Wong will serve until 2011.

Written by MATTHEW WONG / Published November 10, 2010 (ONLINE ONLY)

A vacancy has formed on the City Council, following former Temple City Mayor Judy Wong’s resignation on Tuesday.

Wong tendered her resignation toward the end of the city council meeting. Her announcement surprised both her allies and critics.

“It is with great sadness that I need to inform you that I am resigning my position from the Temple City City Council,” the former city official said.

Wong was first elected in March 2003 and was expected to end her second term in 2011. She was also the first Asian American mayor of Temple City.

“I have diligently served this city for seven years and have fond memories of the wonderful people I have served,” the ex-mayor said. “I am proud of my record and accomplishments for this city and I leave with a heavy heart and immense gratitude for the honor the people of this city has given me.”

In her statement, Wong noted she was resigning to focus on her pending trial.

“As the court case has progressed, it has become increasingly difficult for me to juggle my responsibilities as a city council member and at the same time to assist in the preparation of my trial.”

In 2008, Piazza at Temple City developer Randy Wang accused Wong and other city officials of asking for bribes in exchange for support of his controversial mixed-use development.

Since then, a former city official has stepped down, though no charges were filed against him, and former mayor, who was indicted along with Wong, was denied re-election.

Wong is due in court tomorrow, March 5, 2010.

She has reiterated that she is innocent of the bribery charges against her.

It is unclear when the City Council will meet to decide how to replace Wong. The City Council is holding a joint meeting tonight with the Planning Commission on a separate issue.

The City Council could opt to appoint a replacement or decide to hold a special election for Wong’s seat which expires next March. Potential replacements include current and former commissioners, as well as those who ran for City Council in 2009.

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